Brinda Berry · planning · writing advice

How Planning a Novel Is Like Planning a Wedding

saying wedding vows
the vows

My husband and I recently hosted my niece’s outdoor wedding at our home.  This was my first experience in hands-on wedding preparation. My sister and her best friends did the bulk of the hard work. Still, I’m exhausted by all that is involved in creating this beautiful ceremony. It occurred to me that it is much like writing a novel.

The novel (or wedding) begins with a plot. The story begins with an exciting event, and in this case, an engagement. Next, we had to choose a setting/location.  Of course, there will have to be some conflicts. The bride-to-be had her heart set on a very unique venue as pictured on the ever popular Pinterest. I dare you to guess. Nope. The lovely girl wanted her wedding in a barn.  A mad search for an acceptable barn setting ensued. After several roadblocks, the mother of the bride and two wedding planners came up with Plan B.

So, the location changed from barn to my back lawn.  Our hero and heroine would walk the grassy aisle to…what? Here’s the beauty of the secondary characters in this story.  What fun would a tale be without colorful individuals to help the main characters along the way? The mother of the bride is talented and has several creative best friends.  They planned, borrowed, bought, created, cooked, and laughed together in preparation for the main event. The main characters had a few stressful days as would be expected.  There are plot points that must be achieved before arriving at that final destination.

wedding cake
wedding cakes

In the end, the day arrived and all was prepared.  We held our collective breath hoping for a seamless event. Would the weather cooperate? Early November is risky for an outdoor wedding. Would the couple come prepared with everything they needed? There were last minute changes of photographer, final tweaks with music, and a flurry of activity. Things moved quickly near that final moment.

The wedding culminated into a fairy-tale event.  It’s what writers call a HEA (Happily Ever After). It was a lovely day.  At the end of a wedding, we know that it’s truly just the beginning of the journey. That is what gives us hope and makes us love it.

Mr. and Mrs.
Mr. and Mrs.

25 thoughts on “How Planning a Novel Is Like Planning a Wedding

  1. Absolutely beautiful pictures, Brinda. I hosted a bridal shower in my back yard in the summer and to have it be as elegant as possible was a lot of work. I can only imagine a wedding. You are a good aunti! And congrats to the bride and groom.

  2. So true the similarity between planning a wedding and novel…romance that is, LOL. There are secondary characters but the focus is all on the two in love and traditionally, the bride is in the spotlight. Easy to forget when writing a novel and the story takes off. Bringing the focus back to the lovers and their journey, right there…getting down the aisle toward the HEA. The bride and groom’s support team is so like ours as writers, in the wings, ready to help, but off stage. Congrats to your family. Loved the cupcake display. Notice: I’m stealin’ that idea.

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